Thursday, July 16, 2009

An Open Letter to Headmaster Neville Powles

This is the letter I mailed today after reading the Queers United article about the Catholic school in Albury, Australia that published an anti-gay piece by a former student in its alumni newsletter.

Headmaster Neville Powles
Xavier High School
PO Box 518
ALBURY, NSW 2640

July 16, 2009

Dear Headmaster Powles,

I am troubled to hear of the anti-gay letter that you allowed to be published in your school newsletter. In an interview you said “We live in a country where free speech is available to all,” and that is true enough. I believe that politically correct attempts to control peoples’ minds and words are deeply misguided, and ultimately self-defeating. But the letter you published goes beyond free speech and into the realm of shouting “Fire!” in a crowded theater. In calling to eliminate gay people from society, it incited young minds to hatred and violent oppression. It was wrong to publish it, and I believe that the public is justified in expecting a full apology.

Sincerely,

Hugh Yeman

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